No one will deny the fact that children are the joy of the family. One of the primary functions of the family is reproducing society. The traditional assumption is that the family is an institution for continuation of creating, nourishing and perpetuating life. The family protects the child and provides a favorable environment for its physical, emotional, spiritual and social development.
Healthy food is essential for a healthy body and mind. This goes a long way in developing immunity in children. Children can be afflicted with sudden illnesses and it is essential that parents have a basic knowledge of remedies that can help in mitigating the situation. Some of the common diseases that can affect children include cough and cold, dysentery, fever, vomiting, wheezing, whooping cough etc.
Cough and Cold in Children
Children are prone to cough and cold attacks, especially if they have a weak immunity. This is accompanied with formation of phlegm in chest. Cough and cold afflict children mostly in winter because of easy spreading of the disease causing virus during this time. It is infectious and can spread to others in the family. Runny nose, sneezing, nasal itching etc are the initial symptoms. Cough and cold can lead to headaches, ear infection, heavy feeling on top of head etc. Chronic cough and cold may end up in nasal polyps, tonsillitis etc.
Two drops of juice of tender nochi (Chinese Chaste tree) leaves can be given to children along with breast milk. This induces vomiting. The child will throw up the phlegm in the nasal passage and chest.
Karpooravalli (Indian Borage, Oregano) is an excellent expectorant and diaphoretic. Three to four drops of the juice of the leaves of this herb is mixed in honey and given to kids suffering from cough and cold. This will help expel the phlegm out. You can follow the same process with basil leaves.
A few drops of juice of basil leaves can be given with breast milk too. Vellai kunrimani root is cleaned and then boiled in coconut oil. Store the cooled oil in a bottle. Smear the oil on the tongue of kids suffering from cold and phlegm. This is an excellent expectorant.
A paste made from dried ginger powder is smeared in a thin layer on the forehead and temples. This is very effective in relieving the heavy headed feeling and pain in the nape.
Dry cough can spoil the sleep pattern and food intake in children. This can lead to lethargy and dullness. One helpful remedy to deal with all types of cough, especially dry cough is a preparation made from turmeric and pepper. These are taken in equal quantities as required and ground to a fine powder. This is mixed with honey and given to children with dry cough.
Extract juice from two to three white onions. Add jaggery to this and heat it in a pan. When it reaches a waxy consistency, remove from heat and let it cool. This preparation is given twice a day for a couple of days to alleviate cough and cold.